Transformer Jacket is more than meets the eye

We’ve reviewed Scottevest products in the past, and we’re big fans of their approach to space-saving design.

They recently sent us one of their new Transformer Jackets for us to review. Like their other jackets, it has 20 pockets, which can reasonably save you a small carry-on when flying.

What’s nice about the Transformer is that the sleeves are held on by magnets and they come right off when you pull firmly on them. They also reattach much easier than if they were secured with zippers.

The jacket also has a nice and simple aesthetic that belies the fact that it has so many hidden pockets. The jacket is available for pre-order starting today.

24 Comments for “Transformer Jacket is more than meets the eye”

  1. posted by Marrena on

    Okay, dumb question, but don’t magnets generally harm electronic devices? They’ve got an X-ray view of all sorts of gadgets that shouldn’t get near magnets.

  2. posted by PJ Doland on

    Most of these gadgets rely heavily on flash memory, which is less sensitive to magnetic fields than older electronic devices and digital storage media.

  3. posted by Keith on

    A neat idea in theory, but I’d have to see it in person. Clearly that X-ray mock-up was taking some liberty with the scale of certain items. For example, the iPad they show could almost be covered up by a single hand.

  4. posted by SCOTTEVEST on

    Thanks for the coverage PJ! We are so excited about this jacket and just an FYI extra bonus: ALL SIZES ARE COMPATIBLE WITH THE iPad!!! Pretty stellar!

  5. posted by WilliamB on

    It’s like a wearable man-purse. I’d love to be behind someone using this at the airport. All the little gadgets in one place, easy to take off. No more waiting for someone to find that last pocket in which he stuck his keys.

  6. posted by Laetitia in Australia on

    I can see pros and cons with carrying all the bits in one’s jacket: pro – easy to carry all your things without an extra bag; con: can’t easily shed weight by dropping said bag in a car/leaving it with travel partner for a short time.

  7. posted by Fuse on

    Meh, it’s a neat idea, but it leaves me cold. How long is it going to take for you to take everything out of 20 pockets at the end of the day? If you have to carry around 20+ items regularly, do what everyone else does — get a shoulder bag. The only application I can see for this is air travel in the US, which limits carry-on luggage. Even then, you’d need to have “a system” of putting all your doo-dads away, or else you are never going to remember which of 20 pockets you put your keys in. And your system falls apart as soon as it’s too hot to take a jacket somewhere.

    Now I can see cases in which it would be quite handy to have a specific pocket for a specific thing, so I’m not completely hating the jacket. I just think for $160 you could do a lot better.

  8. posted by stephanie on

    I love my scottevest jacket (and no, i don’t work for the company). But I do travel a lot, usually with 3 kids. The jacket I have has the zippers but it keeps my hands free to do whatever I need to do. It is not bulky at all and it weighs less than you would think. I was skeptical before I got mine, but it is a really good solution for people on the go. I’m a big fan. And I do think it helps to unclutter your life bc you take what you need and nothing more. When I carried bags, I always carried way too much stuff.

  9. posted by Erin Doland on

    I carry my iPad and my Kindle in the pockets of my Scottevest rain coat without any fit problems. When I go through security at the airport, I don’t take either out of the pockets. I just set my coat on the conveyer belt, same as I have to do even if electronics aren’t in it. Once, the TSA person pulled it aside and inspected it … but I think it was more out of interest in the jacket than anything else. I love mine. When it’s fully loaded, it does weigh down a bit, but it’s not bulky and it is way better than carrying a bag over my shoulder while trying to wrangle a toddler through the airport. I don’t find it weird to pull things out of it when I take it off at home, seeing as I do the same thing when I carry a purse. I have to pull my phone out, my Kindle out, etc. to charge it all. Maybe a guy who doesn’t carry a purse or bag would think it was different … not my experience, though.

  10. posted by J on

    Like Erin, I have the ScotteVest trench coat and I am quite happy with it.
    I never fill all the pockets, so unloading everything at the end of the day is never that big a deal. Actually, I tend to just take out my phone and kindle, since my ipod, lipbalm, pen, keys, etc. just stay overnight in the jacket as they would in a bag.
    I did have to have it tailored to fit me (no way am I going to spend so much money on a jacket that fits too baggy), but now I feel really stylish in it.
    I do find that if it gets too warm for wearing, it can be a hassle to access your things. With the trench coat, some of the pockets are tricky if the coat is draped over your arm or hanging on the back of a chair. Fortunately, I live in the Netherlands and it is rare that a day will be unexpectedly too warm.
    Most comical use of the jacket? I attended a wedding last summer and carried two bottles of champagne to the reception (one in each of the big external pockets), plus all my usual wedding stuff (lipstick, mirror, phone, etc. ) and a spare pair of comfy flat shoes for dancing after all the photos were taken. And I got lots of compliments on the color of the jacket.

  11. posted by gjm on

    I have a couple of things to comment on. First, does everyone empty their pockets every night? I tend to have things in pockets that stay there forever, so I’m interested in hearing if I need to try to develop a habit of emptying every night. Also, I have a purse that gets so full of old stuff from hardly ever getting emptied. Do people empty their purses every night too? The practice of having multiple purses and changing to match an outfit simply boggles me.

    To explain the above, I’ll mention that I was recently diagnosed with Adult ADHD, which explains a lot of my organization problems. I’ve realized that I need to re-evaluate everything. I thought that everyone struggled the way I do, but now I find out that’s not true…so instead, I’m going to ask what you all do.

    Also, I’ve realized that there is a reason that the habits I’ve wanted to adopt my entire life seem to elude me. And apparently, it isn’t because I’m lazy! It’s because my brain doesn’t work that way. I am extremely interested in ADHD friendly organizing ideas.

    If any readers here have trouble organizing and keeping focused on a goal, maybe you should take one of the online ADHD quizzes to see if you might have Adult ADHD. It was astounding to me to realize this, but it may end up changing the rest of my life dramatically, and it opened my eyes to the fact that there is a way to improve my life. I’m posting this here because I think many undiagnosed ADHD adults may find this blog in their quest for organization.


  12. posted by Lynn on

    How do you bend over while wearing this while the pockets are full? You would get stabbed by the water bottle or the iPad which definitely do not bend.

  13. posted by Alan on

    I have several of the different jackets(and vest) you guys make, and this one looks like a winner. To those that talk of taking everything out as a bad thing or offer “get a shoulder bag”, well some don’t want to look like that poor frazzled parent at the check out counter/ TSA check/ etc digging through a shoulder bag for something in that chaos, every single evening. I hang mine up and take out Kindle, Ipad, etc if I need it. I even slip my small Assus in the back of the vest when I’m having to move fast. I like the removable sleeves, I use that feature a lot on the revolution plus and it is very handy when you can’t easily change jackets during the day. There are far more pros than cons on this jacket too.

  14. posted by babysteps on

    I have a vintage 1950s Filson jacket with (counting…) 8 pockets, one of which is the entire back of the jacket (think ‘game pouch’). It’s great for not taking a purse – phone in 1 pocket, wallet in another, glasses in a third. In college I used the back pocket for books – no bookbag needed (as long as I didn’t have more than about 3″ of book thickness). Seems to be a time-tested idea 🙂

  15. posted by Whitney on

    I’d be interested to see a photo of what it looks like on a (not super-skinny) person with all of the pockets filled. That look would decide whether I would wear it, and I’m trying to learn not to buy what I won’t wear!

  16. posted by Lori Hammer on

    First, great site, thanks for all the hard work. This is for GJM. I too have ADD and I am extremely organized. Not sure if I was that way all my life, but it is the only way to stay sane when you can’t stay focused. Keep doing your research and learning the tips you will find here, it helps tremendously to live a normal life. BTW, changing purses everyday IMHO, is a huge waste of time. A purse to me is utilitarian in its purpose, sure it should look nice, but if you have issues with time management and staying focused, buy a couple of classics and keep it simple. I had one friend who did empty her purse everyday, but she had a purse cabinet made that held all the purses and the top was a try to dump the items for a quick change out. It was quite brilliant and I am surprise no one has marketed this handy piece of bedroom furniture. One of the most important things I keep in mind when organizing to make life easy it to honor the task for the space allotted and any items not related to that task should live somewhere else. GJM, if you have stuff hoarding in your purse, then maybe it should have never been put in there in the first place. Have your purse for purse related needs, get a transitional bag that gets emptied everyday to let the items inside live where they belong and not in your purse. Hope this helps.

  17. posted by jayeff on

    At some of the Washington, DC, museums, the guards search BAGS only, not pockets or jackets. A tourist with this jacket could enter that museum without hassle.

  18. posted by Jenna on

    For me this is the equivalent of just stuffing your cupboards full of junk and claiming you live an uncluttered lifestyle. As for the X-ray example – an iPhone, an iPad, a Blackberry, a camera and pens…talk about redundancy!

    “Why pay for a carry-on when you can easily wear everything you need?”. Because my clothes aren’t warehouse space and I would like to keep some semblance of dignity and professionalism intact…thanks.

  19. posted by Small Houses on

    So does it look real bulky once you get it loaded down?


  20. posted by GreyQueen on

    For a decade now I’ve owned a garment by the British travel clothing company Rohan. In American-English you’d call it a vest, I think; in Brit-English we call it a waistcoat. Sleeveless, hip-length, zips up, with multiple zippered pockets, interior and exterior, many of which are hidden. I use it a lot at home and always when travelling, so my valuables are always on my person. I keep the same items in the same pockets whenever I use it; wallet here, coins and keys there, passport and boarding card there etc. That way I never have any problems finding my stuff. It gets slung into the tray of the X-ray machine at the airport and I’ve never had security decide they needed to examine it by hand. I can wear a jacket over it if the weather necessitates, or just wear it over a tee in warmer climes. It’s a bag-substitute and anti-theft device and travelling companions have been impressed by the idea and copied. After 10 years of hard-usage, it is showing no signs of distress. Multi-pockets are the way to go…….

  21. posted by Pammyfay on

    I like the idea of a quick pat on the bottom left pocket tells you whether you took your keys or forgot them at home — or any number of other last-minute “do I have everything” questions.

    I know, tho, that an iPad can be heavy — so I don’t know why I would want to carry that in a coat. Just this past weekend, when I was traveling, I had a small unopened bottle of water that I tucked into my coat pocket, and it really weighed my coat down.

    (J: How did it feel carrying those 2 bottles of champagne in the pockets? More points for convenience than comfort? Or the same?)

    So like Whitney and Small Houses, I want to see what it looks like completely filled on an average-height person (and how long until it starts looking droopy). Is it going to look so “suspicious” to any sort of Homeland Security checkers (or the folks who check bags at D.C. museums) that they’re going to want you to empty everything anyway?

    Just wondering…

  22. posted by Reg on

    That’s a top quality shoplifter’s jacket.

  23. posted by Patti on

    Nice looking jacket, but I’d rather just carry all that stuff in a daybag or small backpack I could wear over both shoulders and still have both hands free. I guess that would negate the point of all the pockets though

    Might be good for security, to have all your valuables actually on your person, but yeah if ya get hot and hafta take off the jacket it’s no easier than a bag to keep up with “everything in one place”

  24. posted by Steve on

    I bought both my wife and I a Scottevest jacket for travel. I love them, but beware they are not true to size! If you want to carry an iPad, iPhone and more mack sure to order at LEAST 1 size larger than needed! The models are all trim and if you are close to a size you won’t be able to zip if you load it down!

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